The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

August 9, 2012

Mercy Health of Joplin awarded grant from FEMA

From staff reports

JOPLIN, Mo. — A grant of up to $1.5 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency was awarded Thursday to Mercy Health of Joplin for tornado recovery, according to U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill.

The money will be provided to pay for temporary medical offices being used while the hospital rebuilds from last year’s tornado that destroyed St. John’s Regional Medical Center, according to McCaskill.

“Today’s announcement is another step toward fulfilling the promise I made to never give up on this community as they seek to rebuild what was lost,” McCaskill stated in a news release.

“Mercy Hospital has been crucial to helping the sick and suffering in the aftermath of the Joplin tornado, despite the damage they suffered, and this new disaster aid coming to Joplin will help them stay open for business as they, too, work to rebuild.”

She said the grant brings federal aid to Joplin’s recovery effort to a total of more than $250 million.

Sisters of Mercy Health System previously was granted up to $20 million toward construction of its new hospital. It is operating now in a new building close to the site of the destroyed hospital while the new medical center is being constructed at 50th Street and Hearnes Boulevard.

The hospital and temporary offices will cost nearly $1 billion by the time the new medical center is completed in 2015.

“We are eligible for the funding, but it doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll receive it,” said Shelly Hunter, chief financial officer with Mercy. “FEMA will determine what our funding is after all of our insurance reimbursements have been reconciled.”